Author Topic: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion  (Read 4107 times)

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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I think it is appropriate to open a treat about the reform of the European launcher Industry that is taking place.
Companies merge and takeovers take place to get a lean industry so Ariane 6 can be produced at a compatible price. SpaceNews has written seven articles about this subject. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

Airbus Defence and Space and Safran (Snecma) are in a merging proces to form Airbus Safran Launchers (ASL). Safran want's a shared 50/50 ownership of ASL with Airbus Group, for this they have to pay 800mln Euro to Airbus Group, but a lot of that is going to France Taxes. So for Airbus Group it is not an attractive deal.

Arianespace is owned by CNES (34,68%) and the launcher (component) manufacturers. Link
ASL has already 39,01 % (27,42 [Fra]+11,59 [Ger]) ownership of Arianespace while ELV S.p.A (vega prime contractor) has only 3,38% via Avio SpA. CNES is trying to sell it's shares to ASL (for only 150mln Euro). If this would happen ASL owns 73,69% (34,48 + 39,01%) of Arianespace shares. Is this a wanted situation?
 In the sixth article the view of the Italian space agency is presented, they fear ASL is going to favor Ariane 62 over Vega C/E. It also writes about Italy losing independent acces to space, but (without being offensive) Vega needs technologies from other countries to work, and they launch from French territory, so Italy already has no independent acces to space.

Then there is the fact that 80% of Avio's shares are for sale, Cinven wants to sell them already for a couple of years. The other 20% of the shares are owned by Leonardo (former Finmeccanica). ASI (Italian Space Agency) owns 30% of ELV S.p.A, the other 70% are owned by Avio.
Avio is solid specialist. For Vega they make all the solids, only P80 is casted in France Guiana (Regulus/EuroPropulsion). For the Ariane 5 boosters MT Aerospace (germany) makes the metal casings. Avio applies the thermal protection and files the small top segment. The lower two segments are also Filed in France Guiana. MT is also a likely candidate for developing and manufacturing the Vega E VUS upper-stage. So I think Leonardo and OHB (MT Aerospace) are the most likely candidates to by the AVIO shares.
If this happens Avio and MT Aerospace (OHB) have 11,64% (3,38 + 8,26) of Arianespace.
Possibly ASL will also buy some because they will most likely build the engine for VUS.

What do you expect about the ownership of Avio/ELV, and is it a good development.

Is a ownership of Arianespace: 73,69% ASL [Ariane 6] (77,67 if Airbus D&S SAU&NL [2,04+1,94] are included) and 3,38% (or 11,64) ELV (Vega) and the rest  (22,93 - 10,69 %) by subcontractors a right division.
Ariane 6 will launch 12 times and Vega C/E 3 times per year. I expect a smaller version of Vega besides the Vega E with 3 or 4 launches per year. And possibly also a Micro launch vehicle.

I'm really mis one country in this launchers story and that's the UK. Could this micro launch vehicle come from their side? Sould they get some shares in Arianespace? Via Airbus Safran Launchers ;)
« Last Edit: 04/08/2016 02:26 PM by Rik ISS-fan »

Offline Nicolas PILLET

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Re: European Launch Indistry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #1 on: 04/07/2016 09:35 PM »
ArianeSpace is owned by CNES (34,68%) and the launcher (component) manufacturers.

You should not write "Arianespace" with a big "S".
"Arianespace" word is the merging of "Ariane" and "Espace", which is the French word for "Space". In French, we sometimes call it "AE", but not "AS".

But this is just a detail... :D
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Offline savuporo

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Re: European Launch Indistry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #2 on: 04/08/2016 03:40 AM »
I'm sincerely hoping both UK or Spain will have their own micro/smallsat launcher company operational pretty soon, so that will not go to ArianeSpace.

Looking at a distance, ArianeSpace needs less direct stakeholders, not more, just for the reason of having faster  decisionmaking
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Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Indistry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #3 on: 04/08/2016 11:23 AM »
The post from RonM on the Ariane 6 Update treat is also relevant here. BBC article
It shows that Vega keeps getting heavier. In the presentations from ASI back in 2015 (at their conference and at IAC2015) they showed P120C F27 as a solid with 136mT of propallent and 11mT empty weight. Z40 should have 36mT of propellent and a 3mT empty weight. with the same third (10,5mT) and 1,5x heavier AVUM stage (1mT) the take of weight of Vega C would be about 200mT (147+39+10,5+1+2,2mT payload).

Now in the BBC report and earlier by a tweat form Peter B. de Selding, it was reported that the P120C would get even heavier. This delayed the maiden flight of Vega C form 2018 to 2019. P120C would now contain 142mT of propellent. I guess with an empty weight of 13mT the P120C would have a takeoff mass of 155mT.

Vega has a total take off weight off 137mT and a payload of 1,5mT to SSO. Vega is pushed increasingly into the performance of Soyuz. Vega C was designed so it could launch SAR radar satellites (2,2mT SSO; Sentinel 1 and Cosmo-SkyMed SG). Vega E with an advanced upper-stage would boost the performance to 3mT to SSO.
Now Vega C would end up heavier than 200mT and I guess 2,5mT to SSO. Vega E would go to 3,5mT SSO. While Ariane 62 has a performace of 5,8mT to SSO and 5,6mT to GTO (-1500m/s).
The bulk of Vega's payloads are below 1mT so Vega C will have to carry multiple payloads per launch.

Ariane 6 was made affordable by increasing the launch rate (from max 8/year to 12/year). Vega C/E can only launch 3x per year. The restraint is on P120C casting and testing facilities at CSG (max 35/year). For Vega the Z23 and Z9A stages are filled and (if I'm not mistaken) tested at AVIO (italy). (the igniter is installed at CSG)
The question is if Z40 will be filled in Italy or in CSG. And if it will get heavier, with I think is likely.
DLR has done a lot of design work on VLM (for Brazil), there are also slides where it is shown that Avio supplies a P50 stage to brazil (or designed it for Brazil). VLM uses the same casing (and fuel grain, if I'm not mistaken) with two different nozzels for a sealevel and an mid flight version of the S50 stage. I think it is very likely this will also be done for the Z40/P50. With these stages A launcher with slightly less capability than Vega can be designed.
(P50+Z40+Z9A+Avum+ ; P50+Z40+VUS). If this lighter version of Vega can also launch 3/4x /year, VUS will be build at a cadance of 6/7x /year and P50/Z40 at 9-11x/year. This would create a cadence that would make Vega more affordable.

Now there is one other problem for Vega and Ariane 6. The EU environmental agency wants to decrease the amount of Ammonium Perchlorade (AP) that is burned, because Chrome-oxides are created when AP is burned. There are two solutions for this; ADN based solid propellents or liquid boosters (LOx-LNG or HTP-RP-1/Ethanol)
Airbus and IHI (Japan) are developing a 350kN LOx-LNG GG engine, this will be ready around 2017. Airbus has the Adeline concept.
HorozonSAS (UK) is developing Black Arrow 2 a two stage launcher 200kg to SSO; 360kN +45kN LOx-LNG
Tranquility Aerospace (UK) has a 1kN HTP-RP-1 engine and is developing Devon1 a reusable first stage.
SpaceLS (UK) is developing Raptorex, a 330kN (75k lbf) HTP-RP-1 GG engine, for their Prometheus-1 launcher.
PLDspace is developing LOxRP-1 engines, Arion1 a reusable sounding rocket, and has plans for an orbital launcher Arion2. DLR has a new nozzle design that is going to be tested at PLDspace.
Nammo is developing HTP-HTPB hybrid engines, for sounding rockets and a <50kg orbital launch vehicle. LeafSpace is developing Promo a two stage hybrid launch vehicle with 50kg to SSO capability.
Then you have Zero2Infinity (Spain) with BlooStar; Celestia Aerospace (Spain) with Sagetarius; Swedish Space Systems (SSS) with SOAR, and lots of other things are going on in europe.
While in 2010 (Aldebaran) the conclusion was that with only 4 micro satellites per year there was no market to support the development of a micro launcher. The small companies made business cases where the first stage of their orbital rockets could also function as sounding rockets. But also that market is small.
I only see two of three of the above listed becoming a reality.

I see a mismatch in launcher offering Vega (C/E), Ariane 5;62;64 and the satellite market. And I haven't mentioned Soyuz jet. Al current sounding rockets are military surplus or imported (VS(B)-30; VS-40 Brazil; Texus Castor 4b USA) I think this will change. 
« Last Edit: 04/08/2016 11:34 AM by Rik ISS-fan »

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Indistry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #4 on: 04/08/2016 12:14 PM »
A real threat to Avio is DLR's TSTO design. A P120C with on top a 300-600kN LOx-LNG stage that weights 40-60mT. This has exactly the same capability as Vega C/E and the upper-stage can be derived from a first stage with the engine that Airbus and IHI are developing. Although carbon-fiber filament-wound solid stages and Carbon-fiber wrapped aluminium liquid tanks have a production proces that is roughly the same. (When you don't take in consideration the thermal protection and Alu-tank production)

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #5 on: 04/09/2016 04:54 PM »
Not totally related to the launcher industry.
Onora (France Aerospace Research Institute) reported the creation of ESRE; Association of the European Space Research Establishments. link

Offline Prober

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #6 on: 04/10/2016 02:48 PM »
Not totally related to the launcher industry.
Onora (France Aerospace Research Institute) reported the creation of ESRE; Association of the European Space Research Establishments. link


relevant?


http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=33141.msg1514129#msg1514129
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Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #7 on: 04/10/2016 07:43 PM »
Yes Prober, I think is relevant. Isn't that in the same industrial area where the new factories for the Ariane 5ME =>6 upper-stage have been build?

The subject from [6] was also subject of this Seradata article.
This article discribes my consern beter.

Before 2014 Esa designed the launchers (was responsible), and they contracted suppliers for all the parts. In 2014 it was decided to give the industry the design authority,  and esa would only become the m main n client that would garantee business for the companies. AirbusSafranLaunchers is responsible for the Ariane family and ELV is responsible for Vega. Arianespace buys rockets from ASL and/or ELV, selles the launchers, and provides payload preparation and launch facilities at CSG.
I agree that arianespace should get less (controling) shareholders. With the decision in 2014 Arianespace would get three main controling shareholders CNES, ASL & ELV industry group.
Now ASL wants to have the shares from CNES, and by buying Civens shares of Avio they want to control ELV. ASL would get total control of the European launch industry. I don't think this is an wanted situation. I hope Leonardo and OHB (MT Aerospace) team up to buy avio shares from Cinven. Then you have Arianespace the launch provider, that is controlled by ASL and ELV (AVIO + MT Aerospace).
The question I have is how the shares of Arianespace should be devided between ASL, ELV and a possibly a third party that is responsible for a micro launch vehicle (200-600kg to SSO).
A second question is if and how facilities for micro launch vehicles should be made available at CSG?

I like a good discussion and I want to know how others think about this.


Offline savuporo

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #8 on: 04/10/2016 08:42 PM »
PLDspace is developing LOxRP-1 engines, Arion1 a reusable sounding rocket, and has plans for an orbital launcher Arion2. DLR has a new nozzle design that is going to be tested at PLDspace.
PLD just got spanish government contract. Not big but a good boost for their prospects
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Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #9 on: 04/10/2016 09:42 PM »
Very interesting,  thanks for posting.
I took the freedom to copy your post to PLDspace page in the suborbital segment.

Offline savuporo

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #10 on: 05/13/2016 03:44 AM »
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-11/airbus-said-to-work-on-mini-satellite-launcher-with-eye-on-boom

Quote
Airbus is working on developing a launcher to send mini satellites into orbit, people familiar with the project said, a move that would pit it against the likes of Virgin Galactic and Rocket Lab.
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Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #11 on: 05/13/2016 09:05 AM »
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-05-11/airbus-said-to-work-on-mini-satellite-launcher-with-eye-on-boom

Quote
Airbus is working on developing a launcher to send mini satellites into orbit, people familiar with the project said, a move that would pit it against the likes of Virgin Galactic and Rocket Lab.

In the Arianespace's new 'micro launcher' topic (reply #4) I posted a link to a presentation about this airbus launcher.
Airbus UK 200kg SSO launcher
I think there is a second name, with some historic background, for this small launcher, but that is pure speculation.
The background behind this, is the ARE-42 350-600kN LOX-methane rocket engine collaboratively development by Airbus D&S and IHI. Link IHI the paper: IAC-14.C4.5.1 , is also about this engine (couldn't find the link, I've posted it before).

Then there is also the CNES Promethee engine devevelopment.
I think this could be used in two launchers:
- As first stage for a 80mT GLOW launcher (~1mT payload LEO; 0,5mT SSO 800km) with a LOxLH2 (HM7/Vince) or LOxLNG (Myra) (50-180kN) upperstage.
- And for a second stage for a TSTO with P120C as first stage. I think this launcher falles in between Vega C/E and Ariane 62.
« Last Edit: 05/13/2016 09:36 AM by Rik ISS-fan »

Offline Rik ISS-fan

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Re: European Launch Industry Reforms - News and Discussion
« Reply #12 on: 05/17/2016 10:52 PM »
This post was more appropriate for the Ariane6 update threat so I moved it.
« Last Edit: 05/17/2016 10:57 PM by Rik ISS-fan »

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